Fashion used to be just SO rock and roll, but really design has really taken over the mantle. where fashion was a wonderful barometer of where things where headed, the best place for looking at forward-thinking trends now is design.
Great design is after all about form and function. It is there to instinctively show us how to use something or do something. It is something that we encounter in every part of our daily lives. Therefore we can’t literally stop each time we do something we need to, look at an object and know that the multi fast processor in our head has worked out how to use it before it is even a conscious thought.
Good design is important to support simply because we all use it! looking at the new breed of talent coming through it is easy to see what matters to them. This new breed of industrial or product designers are extremely focused on green initiatives on helping each other and being part of a community. It shows in their work.
Take for example the Rado Star prize on the one most important global design competitions for student and young design talent. At an exclusive event held in the Light Tunnel, King’s Cross on Thursday 19 September, Rado and designjunction as part of the esteemed London Design Fair together announced the winner of the third edition of the Rado Star Prize UK.
The Rado Star Prize is an established competition that has run in numerous countries around the world, supporting young, unestablished designers and giving them a platform to present their work. Far from focusing on just one field of design, Rado aims to attract projects and ideas from numerous design disciplines in order to create projects that can benefit the lives of individuals or communities both now and in the future.
Rado is, of course, the watch brand known for being leading lights in materials and craft within the watchmaking world. Know for pushing the boundaries of what is possible within materials and technology in this area they are seen as world leaders and a brand to watch to see where trends are going.
The Judges’ Winner prize was awarded to Huw Evans, who impressed the judges with his entry, Concertina collection. The designer’s first-hand research into the properties of timber unearthed the impact of subtle changes in thickness, length and the frequency of cuts to the material’s flexibility. His pieces emphasize the bandsaw marks which can be very wasteful. The piece of design allows for the wood to be stretched and manipulated so it can expand and afford a wide surface area suitable for furniture whilst limiting the quantity of timber used.
His designs (a chair and lamp) are crafted in English Ash and Cherry wood with both being sourced locally and are FSC approved. The wood finish is an OSMO oil which is based on natural renewable vegetable oils with very low VOC content.
This is the future, brilliantly held in new young hands that care so much about design and materials but not at the cost of the planet but creating items that work alongside our home; to raping it but working alongside it to provide us all with a natural sustainable healthy future.
There were ten finalists all together in this years rado Star Prize. Items on show included an ergonomic asthma inhaler, by James Plimmer, a wooden set of dolls helping children to express how they feel, by Katy Thomas a portable piano by Liam Arteona, audio technology by Rocco Giovannoni to help the hard of hearing, products to reduce electrical waste by Tomi Laukkanen, silicone elastic as a connector of items by Matthieu Muller, and also the winner of the Elle prize The Willow chair by Peter Kovacs.
Each and every item connected with our everyday needs and concerns and help us see a way to a far brighter more connected less wasteful world. Bring on the new talent!
Lastly one of the nicest elements of this seasons competition is that the general public can get involved. Go to Design Junction in the Kings Cross area and find the Light Tunnel at Kings Boulevard and go walk down the long tunnel and see each of the finalists and have a chance to vote on your favorite
After all, design is, and always should be, democratic and should always move our lives forward into a better world for all.